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Not the Solomon Key

This recent news item suggests that the title of DB's next book will *not* be The Solomon Key. The news is based on a discussion a (different) journalist had with Brown's representative:

During a conversation about the book, which the journalist repeatedly called “The Solomon Key,” Brown’s rep seemed to get exasperated and stopped her:

“You are using a title that was used several years ago. That is completely out of date.”

I'd imagine this was the same journalist that called me about Dan Brown's next book a couple of weeks ago. She told me the same thing, although not in that detail, and asked me for my thoughts. I agreed that it could well be the case, given that much of DB's 'thunder' has been stolen in recent years (not least by myself!), and also given similar news items a couple of years ago.

However, I also noted that some things still argue in favour of 'The Solomon Key' as being the title. A couple of years ago - after the first news of the title change - DB's Solomon Key domains were renewed through to 2016. Also, there have been no new trademark applications in Brown's name since The Solomon Key was registered - and it was renewed most recently in December 2008 by his lawyers, suggesting the title is still well and truly in the frame and not "out of date" as his rep stated (although this is the last 6-month extension available to him for that trademark - so we might know for sure in June).

It's worth noting also that the rep dismissed the ET story as well (regarding Ron Howard's comment that the next book was finished) "repeating that Brown had not finished the book." Not sure that Howard would get that fact wrong, given he's in direct communication with DB. So I'd reserve plenty of skepticism for the rep's statements. Hopefully we'll find out either way pretty soon.

Ron Howard: The Solomon Key is Done

Director Ron Howard may have just spilled the beans. Talking to Entertainment Tonight on the set of Angels and Demons, Howard said...

...Brown had finished writing the long-awaited third book featuring Langdon, and that the author was "very excited" about the novel.

But still DB's US publisher Doubleday are refusing to make anything official, saying only that he was making "great progress" with the book and that there was as yet no title or publication date to share.

In other news a longer Angels and Demons trailer - with shots from the actual movie this time - has been released on the movie's official website. Looks like some good fun.

A&D - Path of Illumination

Sony Pictures have begun promotion of the movie adaptation DB's Angels and Demons, with the official website as well as a multi-stage "Path of Illumination" contest. The movie website also features an early trailer, though it doesn't show very much - more for setting the atmosphere than anything.

I'm afraid I won't be playing the contest, as (a) it's not open to those in Australia, and (b) it requires you to have a Windows Live account. Sometimes I'll jump through a few hoops, but I really don't feel like signing up to Microsoft in a blatant marketing move (requiring a Windows Live account, and a download of the new Photosynth program).

But feel free to share tips/hints in the comments thread to this story if you do enter. One thing perhaps worth noting - in the trailer, the words 'Altars of Science' is 'hidden' within the "Illuminati" ambigram.

Angels and Demons Action

A recent story on the upcoming film adaptation of DB's Angels and Demons quotes producer Brian Grazer as saying that the new film will be less puzzles and history, and more action and technology:

"This continues the Langdon character in a much more modern form in a high-velocity situation," Grazer says. "The stakes are higher; the stakes are related to the main character. The 'Da Vinci Code' was much more of a puzzle movie, and this is much more of an action movie."

Grazer also discusses some difficulties in shooting in Rome, implying possible influence from DB's big fans at the Vatican. Angels & Demons opens on May 15.

Dan Brown Spotted!

If you were unsure if DB had ended up with Jimmy Hoffa somewhere, I can reassure you that he is alive and kicking (and hopefully finished a certain book!). He's turned up in a promotional video proselytising on behalf of books, alongside Elmo and Jon Stewart no less. It's only a brief appearance, but it confirms that the Illuminati and Opus Dei agents haven't done anything heinous to him (yet)...

RH Shake-Up Good News for Dan Brown Fans?

Publisher Random House has reorganised its empire with the dismantling of the Bantam Dell and Doubleday imprints. The latter was home to Dan Brown, so now he will become part of the Knopf imprint led by publisher Sonny Mehta. GalleyCat believes this might actually be a positive for fans of Dan Brown:

This means that we might actually see 'The Solomon Key' sometime in 2009, maybe 2010 at the latest. Because Sonny Mehta can get that book out of Dan Brown if he has to lock himself into a hotel room with the guy and collect the manuscript pages as they come out of the typewriter, just like he did to coax 'So Long, And Thanks for All the Fish' out of Douglas Adams.

We shall see...

Angels and Demons a Sequel, not Prequel

Director Ron Howard has said that the upcoming Angels and Demons movie has been written for the screen as a sequel to The Da Vinci Code, rather than a prequel (as in the books). He also said the new movie will move faster than the last, with its "ticking time bomb" scenario and clash of the past and new technology.

Solomon Key at Frankfurt

Rumours swirled at the recent Frankfurt Book Fair with some publishers saying that Dan Brown has delivered the final manuscript for the sequel to The Da Vinci Code. Will it still be called The Solomon Key? DB's lawyers renewed his trademark application for the title mid-year, so it would seem it's likely. Stay tuned...

Angels and Demons Movie - First Look

USA Today has a 'first look' feature on the upcoming movie adaptation of DB's Angels and Demons, in which they talk to producer Brian Grazer. Grazer admits the DVC movie was a bit slow-moving, and says A&D will be a faster-moving affair. But most importantly - Robert Langdon's (Tom Hanks) hair will be different this time around. Was that a sigh of relief I heard?

DVC Inspires Vicious Attack

A Rome priest has been viciously attacked by a man who had just watched the movie adaptation of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code:

Police said Mr Luzi, a former medical student with a history of psychiatric problems, had admitted watching the film version of Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code on television the night before the frenzied assault.

At his flat nearby, where he lived with his mother Paola, investigators found material on the Apocalypse and the anti-Christ, and the telephone number of L'Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper.

There was also a large reproduction of Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper, which is at the heart of the mystery in The Da Vinci Code, with a note pointing to one of the disciples reading: "This is the hand in which a knife is hidden".

One can't help but feel that it wouldn't have taken much to set off this particular person, so it's probably a little much to say that DVC caused the attack.

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